Overgeared - Chapter 1832
Haster—he was considered the greatest professional gamer in the era before virtual reality was commercialized. His life had been likened to a roller coaster. It was so curved.
Evaluations before and after the launch of Satisfy were sharply divided. He was even on the verge of becoming the epitome of degeneration. His failure to live up to people’s expectations and his failure to perform in Satisfy led to a constant downward trend.
This was before he joined the Overgeared Guild. After becoming a member of the Overgeared Guild, Haster’s evaluation rose again. The public finally concluded that the great gamer was perfectly revived. This was how great his performance was. In particular, the image of him sweeping away the broken guardians protecting the city of the ancient giants with just Hurent was strongly imprinted in the public’s mind.
Once asked by reporters about how he adapted to virtual reality and regained his second heyday, he said, “It is thanks to Grid helping me train.” His personality was very humble and he established himself as a representative likable character.
Haster himself was realizing his popularity. He was careful not to disappoint those who admired him again.
The same was true now. Haster’s words were extremely cautious at a scene where there were many witnesses. He coordinated his facial expressions and speech like the actor in ancient drama.
“I finally found him.”
The blind swordsman, Cabelon—a transcendent who claimed to be the disciple of Sword Saint Muller, but went missing after Muller appeared. He was a suspicious figure in many ways. He was a target of vigilance. However, they couldn’t let him be hunted by Baal. Putting aside his suspicion, they had to secure his personal safety.
Haster had been authorized to operate 100 assassins from the Overgeared Shadows and he was desperately tracking down Cabelon’s whereabouts for the past fortnight. At this moment, he finally faced Cabelon.
A restaurant in the center of a marine city—people were agitated by the appearance of a superstar.
“It isn’t an exaggeration to say that there is no place where the eyes and ears of the empire don’t reach in the continent. It is safe to say that the entire empire is acting like a living and breathing dragon,” the blind man at the table said casually as he ate.
Despite having his eyes covered by thick bandages, he was able to identify the location of the assassins around the restaurant in real time. The assassins of the Overgeared Shadows were holding their breath in the direction his eyes, covered by bandages, were facing. The assassins felt as if they had made eye contact and were somewhat nervous.
Haster immediately got to the point. “I will take you to Reinhardt. It is purely for your safety, so please don’t misunderstand and cooperate.”
“Safety? Was it because of this?”
Cabelon smirked as he pulled something out and threw it. It was a piece of purple fabric. No, it was leather. It gave off a terrible stench.
“This is skin obtained by cutting Baal. The 1st Great Demon was nothing special.”
“It was just a fragment. The Baal who appeared on the surface was nothing more than a fake body overlaid with a fragment of his ego as a soul. It is very weak unlike the main body.”
“In any case, he is forced to send such a trivial alter ego up. Isn’t that what you mean? I am someone who can take care of myself, so get lost.”
“Muller said that he wanted to meet you.”
Cabelon, who had been talking proudly, closed his mouth. They couldn’t read his expression because half his face, including his eyes, were wrapped in bandages. But at the very least, he didn’t seem calm.
“He said he didn’t know a blind swordsman or someone called Cabelon.”
Haster started to check the entire situation. The state of the surrounding terrain, whether the position of the Overgeared Shadows was maintained as scheduled, what passive skills should be activated to signal special situations, if the quantity of potions was sufficient, etc. He predicted that Cabelon would go on a rampage and prepared for battle. He thought he unconditionally had to win and subdue Cabelon.
There were too many witnesses. Haster couldn’t be defeated for the sake of the honor he had regained, or for the sake of Grid and the Overgeared members who had restored his honor.
The self-proclaimed disciple of Muller—the blind swordsman who had disappeared when Muller returned alive suddenly rose from his seat.
“Your ears are very sensitive,” Cabelon murmured.
The sound of the breathless people gulping, the rustling of their collars, the stepping backwards, the noise of chairs dragging on the ground, the noise of the dining table, and even the chirping of birds outside the windows—he noticed that Haster was responding to all these ‘sounds.’
“It feels like you are always ready to go out immediately in the direction where you heard the sound… are you as blind as me?”
“No, that isn’t possible. I clearly remember what your stride was like when you came in here. What? Are you a pervert pretending to be blind?”
Cabelon laughed mischievously. Just then—
One wall of the dining room split in half, just like his mouth that opened to reveal white teeth. It was the result of Cabelon’s sword drawing technique. Faint groans could be heard from everywhere beyond the collapsed wall.
The barely swallowed down the groans—it was the sound of the assassins of the Overgeared Shadows, who were trying not to be discovered even though they were wounded.
The screams of the citizens unrelated to this situation followed with a slight time lag. Many people were surprised to see the restaurant suddenly split in half.
“I would appreciate it if you could evacuate the citizens,” Haster requested of the players around him.
Haster was the only member of the Overgeared Guild on the field. The players who received his request were simply third parties who happened to be here. Nevertheless, they all moved at Haster’s request. Haster was weighed down by the reputation of the Overgeared Guild that he carried on his back, but they had a great respect for Haster.
“I aimed for the neck, but not a single one was cut… what a monstrous nation. There is a lot of talent. When I left for the East Continent, the Saharan Empire used to be considered the strongest nation of all time, but the gap is too great compared to the empire of the current time.”
Putting aside his admiration, Cabelon was still relaxed. It was natural. From inside the building, he slashed at external enemies who were hiding at an invisible angle. He even hit those hidden in cover tens to hundreds of meters away with a single blow. He didn’t cut down any of the innocent civilians and precisely targeted the assassins.
He was a disaster-class monster. Everyone at the scene noticed it. If Haster was to fight a monster like this, Haster was going to lose.
Only one person—Haster himself thought differently.
‘It is a battle of hearing.’
Just now—Cabelon identified the location of the assassins through their breathing. It was enormous considering the fact that the breathing of the assassins was so low that ordinary people couldn’t even perceive it right in front of them. However, it wasn’t a special thing for Haster.
The reason why Haster was able to check the position of the assassins before the battle was because he could also sense the assassins’ breathing. The reason why Haster was still worshiped as a legend in the FPS world was because he used sound to play the game in ways that ordinary people could never imagine.
Meanwhile in Satisfy, Haster had accumulated transcendence and had a physical body beyond human limits. His hearing wasn’t inferior to Cabelon’s at all.
The two men stood facing each other among those fleeing in panic—without any hasty movements, their hands clung to their swords as they remained wary of each other’s hearing. It was as if they were sculpted together from the beginning.
How much time passed?
The chandelier, which had hung dangerously from the slanted ceiling, fell to the ground and shattered. It was a signal.
Haster took a stride as Cabelon’s hearing focused on the noise. It was while dancing the Wind Dance. It was one of the Red Sage’s skills that allowed him to freely control his own and other’s mana and use them in various ways. A wind that was indistinguishable from natural wind manifested using Cabelon’s mana, not Haster’s, as a resource. The disastrous mess inside the restaurant was ventilated very naturally and kept Cabelon from noticing his actions.
Haster’s footsteps became silent.
A gentle wind blew.
The assassins watching the situation from outside admired it and thought it resembled Faker’s assassination technique.
The image of Cabelon reflected in Haster’s eyes grew rapidly. Haster, who had stopped breathing, easily put Cabelon within his attack range. The dragon weapon held in his sinewy hand was inserted into Cabelon’s shoulder. After inflicting maximum damage at once, he had to use mana to induce an irresistible stun and suppress Cabelon in one go.
“You should’ve aimed for the neck.”
Cabelon’s voice rang out. The weak wind created by Wind Dance loosened the bandages covering his face. Both eyes were exposed. There were dark black marks over his eyelids and they seemed to be wounds from long ago. It looked miserable, but surprisingly, they opened up well. The clearly focused eyes captured Haster’s horrified face.
Were they artifact eyeballs? There was no information about this…
The panicked Haster slashed at Cabelon’s shoulder, while Cabelon’s sword aimed for Haster’s neck. A close match that was divided only by a single piece of paper. If only Haster had aimed for Cabelon’s neck—it was the moment when the match that was close enough to be a tie was decided…
The players who evacuated the people and returned to watch turned pale. The assassins of the Overgeared Shadows were already flying over. It was too late, but they were aiming to rescue Haster. It was unnecessary help.
“…Hah,” Cabelon sighed.
Heroic Story—it was the power of the Seven Malignant Saint that was inherited by Haster. It was conditionally the strongest defensive skill. If he took damage within two minutes of consuming resources, and if it was damage caused by ‘skills’ or ‘magic,’ he was immune to the damage.
Funnily enough, there was a fatal disadvantage in that it had no effect on ordinary attacks, but the counter that Cabelon just used was swordsmanship that was classified as a ‘skill.’ Thus, Haster was unscathed.
“It is a crazy nation. A monster like you is a mere hound sent to catch me. You—aren’t you on par with Muller at this point? It seems that even Muller’s sword can’t cut you easily,” Cabelon slumped due to being unable to handle the power of the dragon weapon and spoke honestly.
He agreed to the result. He lost the will to resist and spoke as he pleased. The repercussions were huge.
A named NPC who was obviously a transcendent was evaluating Haster as comparable to Sword Saint Muller. It was just a personal guess, but because there was a precedent for Grid becoming an Absolute as a player, people couldn’t easily dismiss it.
In addition, this was Haster. A professional gamer who was a legend among legends. At one time, he was so close to Grid that it was misunderstood that he had changed class to ‘Grid’s Successor.’ There was even a time when he was spotted handling Grid’s God Hands like they were his own limbs. There was no way Grid could just leave the God Hands with anyone, so people whispered that Haster was really getting close to becoming an Absolute.
Haster was embarrassed. In fact, luck accounted for 90% of the victory, so it was very embarrassing. Still, as it was said in the beginning, he was in a position where he had to be conscious of people’s gazes.
He didn’t try to deny Cabelon’s speculation. In the first place, the reason Cabelon evaluated him so highly wasn’t just because of his defensive ability. He was highly evaluated due to his ability to eliminate sound and the reverse use of other people’s mana. In any case, his skills were reflected to some extent.
“Who knows? As long as Muller decides to serve God Grid, I won’t exchange blows with him.”
“What? That Muller is serving another? Wasn’t it just a temporary favor? It can’t be.”
“If you don’t believe it, go and check it yourself. Let’s go back to Reinhardt.”
Haster captured Cabelon and used the return scroll. One by one, the assassins followed. They didn’t forget to reimburse the restaurant owner.
“You’ve sent me a support request, but handled it by yourself…?”
“It happened to turn out like this, so…” Haster scratched his beard.
Lauel had a somewhat puzzled expression as he looked at Haster, who was embarrassed after a proud achievement. Then Lauel soon smiled. “There was only a slump for the hero who dominated an era, no collapse. I respect you.”
Securing Cabelon was a difficult challenge. It was hard to find his whereabouts. Even if they did find him, it wasn’t easy to subdue him. Cabelon had skills that even Kraugel acknowledged. This was why Lauel immediately dispatched the city’s best people after being informed by Haster that he had found Cabelon. Haster’s performance in beating Cabelon alone far exceeded Lauel’s expectations.
Sword Saint Muller arrived and raised an eyebrow when he saw Cabelon sitting in a corner.
“The ruins hunter? You are the one who impersonated being my disciple? Unbelievable. I didn’t know you were alive all this time…”
“There is no law that I should die when you, Muller, and the Great Robber of the Red Night are alive.”
Muller confirmed his appearance again and told Lauel, “You’ve saved a great treasure.”
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